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Cambodia Breaking News (Svay Rieng): In the rainy season, farmers in Svay Teap village, in Svay Rieng, catch leeches to sell in order to make more money for their family.
Mr. Meas San, 42 years old, is a farmer who has been supplementing his income by catching leeches for ten years now. He says that catching leeches isn't easy. Leech catchers have to leave home and go to a place that has water and buffaloes. They go into the water and stir it up to attract the leeches, then they trap them and put them in a bottle.
Mrs. Sou, also a leech catcher, said she has a team 6 to 7 people who catch leeches. They spread out at 400 to 500 meters distance from each other to look for leeches. They leave home early in the morning and come back at 2 or 3 pm.
However, this past year the price of the leeches has fallen dramatically. Last year, leeches were worth 60,000 to 70,000 riels per kilo, whereas this year the price is only 25,000 riel per kilo.
According to Mr. Prak Saveoun, a leech buyer, he has been in the business of buying leeches for 5 to 6 years. He sells them to people in Phnom Penh, but he and other leech sellers are looking for a better market. He doesn't really know where else he could sell them, but he knows that people took those leeches to resell in China. People are working hard to find leeches and, when successful, one person could catch up to 2 kg of leeches. If the money was better, they could make a good living.
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